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What the Heck is Streaming?

There was a time when, if you wanted to watch a movie or television program on your TV, you’d turn it on, wait for the picture tube to warm up, and then you’d be able to watch what was available. You were also limited by the power of your antenna, the strength of the signal that was being transmitted, and the very small number of channels available. This meant that frequently people were only able to see fuzzy black and white images of programs they didn’t really want to watch.

With the rise of the VCR in the 1980s, people were delighted to find they had a choice about what they wanted to watch and when. Video rental stores, both large and small, opened up where you could rent your favorite movies. Video tapes were eventually displaced by DVDs, and then Blu ray discs—and physical media is now on the decline as streaming has taken hold.

How does streaming work?

Simply put, streaming today means sending and receiving packets of data in a continuous flow over the internet, rather than the public airwaves. These packets of data contain the digital information that represents the media content you’re watching, listening to, or playing.

Nowadays, people are able to stream what they want whenever they want—movies, TV shows, concerts, music and video games—on a variety of devices, such as their phones, tablets, PCs, laptops, and Smart TVs.

As long as you have a reliable broadband connection, the device you’re using can play the content smoothly without interruption. If you’ve ever watched videos on Netflix or YouTube, or listened to music on Spotify, you’ve already been streaming. And if you’ve ever spent too much time waiting for a movie or video to stop buffering, you’ve felt the effects of having internet service that wasn’t serving you the bandwidth you required.

Want to know more about streaming and whether or not you have the broadband speed you need? We’re here and we’d love to hear from you!

Horizon is here to help!

At Horizon, we value our role as your trusted advisor when it comes to making the most of our internet services.

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